Looking for help talking to a seller or buyer (or other agent) about the liability in love letters? We have developed a resource that is easy to share that explains in simple terms why there can be fair housing liability with discrimination, bias or perception of unfairness when love letters are part of the homebuying process. You can give clients this link easily: https://berkshirerealtors.net/loveletters/. For example you can share:
I wanted to share some information about fair housing liability to sellers and real estate agents when receiving or reading buyer love letters. Those little notes from potential buyers with an offer may unwittingly violate fair housing laws – they most often contain personal information and characteristics of the buyer (race, religion, or family status, etc) which could then be used either knowingly or through unconscious bias, to accept or reject an offer. The problem is that we can’t tell if a love letter contains information about a protected class unless we receive and read it, and that very act exposes both of us to liability for a discrimination claim. Here is what my Board of REALTORS wrote to explain it in more detail, as well as some best practices I’d like you to consider. https://berkshirerealtors.net/loveletters/
Please note that MAR has two forms in the works that you will be able to send as part of your seller packet (trackable) as well. We will keep you posted when it’s available!